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Yeah, MPQ. It’s pretty obscure; you’ve probably never heard of it…

Discussion in 'Suggestions' started by deer, Oct 27, 2020.

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  1. deer
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    deer Pac Pinky

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    [​IMG]
    Frisii [GM]: Hello there
    capreolina: are yall just surprised ppl actually run mpq
    Frisii: Keep going lmao
    Frisii: Well, a bit
    Frisii: xD
    Wyndham [GM]: i remember the struggle
    Wyndham: but mpq is fun
    Pictured: A casual GM visitation during one of my MPQ runs.

    MPQ (short for “Magatia Party Quest”, a.k.a. “Romeo & Juliet Party Quest”) is a party quest (in the style of KPQ, LPQ, & OPQ) taking place in Magatia that requires:
    • A party of exactly 4 players. (4~4 players)
    • All party members to be in the level range 71~85. (Early third job)
    • At least one (1) of the 4 party members to be a mage with maxed Teleport. (≥1 mage(s))
    • At least one (1) of the 4 party members to be capable of attaining ≥120% JUMP, and/or that has the Recoil Shot skill. (≥120% JUMP)
    Despite being the primary PQ in its level range (71~85, which does fully overlap with the 55~100 level range of PPQ, but PPQ’s EXP is then lacklustre for those of a high enough level to be third job), and despite having a MapleTip dedicated to it, MPQ is the subject of some neglect, hence this post. If you know me in-game (as “cervid”, “capreolina”, “cervine”, and/or “hydropotina”), then you know that I spend basically all of my time PQing… MPQ, in particular, is special to me because it is one of my favorite PQs, and because of its position as the “last” (again, ignoring that PPQ does technically go all the way to level 100) PQ in a relatively unbroken line of PQs from level 10 to level 85. MPQ is unique in contrast to its predecessors like KPQ and OPQ because it is genuinely rather challenging for most parties that are eligible to complete it:
    • The mobs have very high HP and defenses.
    • Completing the PQ correctly, in its entirety — and in a reasonable timeframe — requires a not-insignificant amount of specialized knowledge and teamwork.
    • The boss fight (particularly against Angry Franken Lloyd, or “Angy Franky”, as I prefer to call him) is undoubtably more challenging than that in any of the PQs at or before the level range of MPQ.
    The neglect that MPQ is subject to comes in two forms. On the one hand, it can be very (very) difficult to get parties going for MPQ, partly due to its stringent requirements (particularly, the absolute requirement for at least one (1) mage), and due to the lack of familiarity and/or interest that players have for MPQ. I have done a large (relatively speaking) number of MPQs myself, but this is, again, largely due to my dedication to almost exclusively PQing, and my willingness to wait in the lobb(y/ies) indefinitely for groups to materialize. On the other hand, MPQ is somewhat plagued by its implementation details; even if it is, at heart, a very nice PQ. This post seeks to, hopefully, ameliorate both of these issues at once, thus (at least somewhat) rehabilitating MPQ as a PQ in its own right.

    The suggestions in this post are divided between two categories: “design failures”, and “bugs”. Hopefully, this informal distinction is somewhat self-explanatory.


    Design failures

    The requirements to enter MPQ are too strict

    There are three of the requirements to enter MPQ that I want to talk about here, in descending order of importance:

    MPQ requires a party of exactly 4 players

    It seems that the party size requirement should be loosened from 4~4 to at least as wide as 3~4. None of the stages are really significantly different with 3 players (as opposed to 4), except for being somewhat slower. Loosening to 2~4 is also technically possible, but perhaps too loose; no comparable PQs allow parties smaller than 3, and completing MPQ with only 2 players is perhaps too challenging for anyone but the best duo, anyways.

    Expanding even further to 3~5 would be nice, but most likely infeasable due to the existence of stage 6.

    MPQ requires that all party members be in the level range 71~85

    This is not really a terrible requirement or anything, but I believe that it could reasonably be extended a bit, perhaps to something like 71~90 (compare: OPQ requires level 51~70), or perhaps even better, 71~100 (compare: PPQ also has a maximum level of 100). This helps to form groups and make the PQ generally more fruitful, although it does have the possible downside(?) of making MPQ parties just a tad bit stronger on average.

    MPQ requires that at least one member of the party is a mage

    Requiring a certain specific skillset (particularly Teleport!) is traditional in PQs; see LPQ and OPQ, for example. However, this particular requirement for MPQ makes it extremely difficult to get groups:
    • It’s already difficult enough to get 4 people to MPQ, as-is.
    • By third job, all 3 mage classes have gotten some killer skills that help them train efficiently (Poison Mist, Ice Strike, Holy Symbol/Shining Ray, &c.), so the experience-gaining aspect of MPQ is not necessarily as appealing to them.
    Furthermore, the stage that requires a mage (stage 4) is the same stage that requires someone who can attain ≥120% JUMP (and/or who has the Recoil Shot skill); the latter requirement is much more reasonable and actually interesting, since there are a number of ways that one can satisfy this requirement, and depending on how one satisfies it, some players will be more well-equipped to complete the JQ efficiently than others. The other JQ in stage 4 (the one that only mages can complete) is not nearly as interesting: you just have to be a mage, and you use your maxed Teleport to teleport around the grid.

    If this requirement were to be loosened, there is more than one way of loosening it:
    1. Make only one of the two JQs absolutely required, and make the other one grant bonus EXP. The number of passes that need to be collected could be kept constant by allowing players to turn in 2 clipboards for bonus EXP, or 1 clipboard and 2 passes for normal EXP.
    2. Require either one of two things to complete the stage:
      1. Both clipboards.
      2. Just 1 clipboard, and n passes, where you choose some fixed n such that n > 2.
      No bonus EXP is involved here, but having a mage makes the stage easier/quicker to clear.
    3. Only require one JQ to clear the stage, but award no special reward for completing both JQs.
    …and probably also some other methods that I’ve not thought of.

    Having both a “Juliet” side and a “Romeo” side is unnecessarily harmful

    Having the PQ split between two sides has the effect of:
    • Making it more difficult to form parties, because there is no single map and no single NPC that players can congregate around to form parties (unlike other PQs).
    • Making it pointlessly more difficult to obtain the main rewards for the PQ.
    The reality is that starting the PQ, from either side, is the exact same PQ. Yes, a few names here and there are swapped, but after all, a rose by any other name would smell as sweet, no? Even the “plot” is the same, with the names swapped, which I suppose is technically a plot hole…?

    Anyways, there are a few different ways of collapsing the PQ into a single, unified location/starting-point:
    1. Keep both sides’ maps intact, but simply disallow players from starting the PQ from one of the sides. The NPC on the unusable side would prompt players to go to the other side if they want to MPQ.
    2. Completely trash one side (e.g. by disabling the portal that leads to it, or making the portal on both sides lead to the same map).
    3. Make both sides award the same color of marble.
    4. Implement a portal that takes players back and forth between the two sides.
    5. Make both sides award the same color of marble, and implement a portal that takes players back and forth between the two sides.
    Not all of these solutions actually solve all of the problems equally well. For example, (3.) only solves the problem of the PQ rewards, not the problem of congregating and forming parties. Option (2.) is the most thorough.

    Rocks of Wisdom are too scarce and, more importantly, too unreliable

    Scarcity

    It is possible to get a Rock of Wisdom as the end reward for successfully completing MPQ. However, it is so rare, that getting all of your Rocks of Wisdom from the “Yulete’s Reward” quest is very common. This is not, in itself, a problem; however, getting the Rocks of Wisdom by turning in marbles to Yulete is a bit impractical. Assuming that you want to use all 3 slots on your Horus’ Eye, you need 80 marbles (i.e. 80 successful MPQs):
    • 50 marbles to get a Horus’ Eye.
    • And 10 marbles per Rock of Wisdom, times 3, is 30 more marbles.
    Now, on my woodman (STR archer), I went from level 71 to level 86 (i.e. almost the entirety of the MPQ level range) on experience from MPQ alone. By the end of it, I had enough marbles for a Horus’ Eye and one (1) Rock of Wisdom; the Rock of Wisdom failed, but we’ll get to that later. I technically had a little more than 70 marbles in total, but my left-over marbles were mixed in color such that I couldn’t obtain a second Rock of Wisdom (this is addressed above). So, as of this writing, I am wearing a Horus’ Eye with 2 slots and zero (0) scroll successes.

    It is, of course, possible to simply kill yourself a sufficient number of times (assuming that you aren’t a permabeginner!) and do enough extra MPQs for no experience reward that you get all of the Rocks of Wisdom needed to scroll your Horus’ Eye all the way. But, considering that I was two rocks short of scrolling to completion after grinding MPQ through its entire level range (something that extremely few people would do, i.e. something I only did due to my dedication to PQing), the current scheme seems a bit unreasonable.

    I’m not really trying to suggest that the rate at which Rocks of Wisdom are awarded from the PQ be buffed (although that could help), but rather, perhaps the number of marbles required for each reward (the Horus’ Eye and the Rocks of Wisdom) be tweaked to make it more viable to grind MPQ for what is supposedly its main item reward (similar to Broken Glasses for LPQ, Squishy Shoes for KPQ, &c.).

    Unreliability

    Rocks of Wisdom are 60% scrolls. Why they have a success probability of 60%, instead of the obvious choice of 100%, is presumably due to the evil tendencies latent within Necksawn themselves. Thankfully, MapleLegends has the chance to fix this design failure by buffing their success rate to 100%. Grinding literally dozens of MPQs (each of which is considerably more difficult than, and takes significantly longer than, an OPQ run) only to have your Rock(s) of Wisdom fail on the only Horus’ Eye that you have access to, is disappointing, to say the least.

    It is already possible (21.6% probability, assuming that you manage to get your hands on 3 Rocks of Wisdom) to get 100% successful outcomes, and thus a perfect (+3) Horus’ Eye with the following stats:
    • STR: 3
    • DEX: 3
    • INT: 3
    • LUK: 3
    • HP: 210
    • MP: 210
    • WDEF: 60
    • MDEF: 60
    • AVOID: 14
    • SLOTS: 0
    This is really the only way to be competitive with the Silver Deputy Star. The perfect Horus’ Eye compares to the clean Silver Deputy Star as follows:

    Pros:
    • More HP & MP (210 > 100).
    • Somewhat more WDEF & MDEF (60 > 35).
    • Gives significant AVOID (14 > 0).
    Cons:
    • Gives 2 fewer of each stat, viz. STR, DEX, INT, and LUK (3 < 5).
    • Requires a minimum level of 70, which is significantly higher than the minimum level of 50 on the Silver Deputy Star.
    • Is untradeable, and thus must be obtained by actually doing all 80 MPQs yourself, and cannot be sold once it is outgrown (i.e. replaced by a Silver Deputy Star, a Horntail Necklace, a Mark of Naricain, &c.).
    As you can see, a perfect Horus’ Eye has some decent defensive advantages over a Silver Deputy Star — which is great — but its downsides tend to convince players to avoid it entirely (even assuming that they could get a perfect one!). The idea here is not to buff the Horus’ Eye, nor to buff the effect of a successful Rock of Wisdom — although those could be nice, if done well — but rather, to buff the success rate of the Rock of Wisdom from 60% to 100%, thus making a perfect Horus’ Eye somewhat attainable.

    As a side note, it could also be feasible to make the Horus’ Eye and/or the Rock of Wisdom tradeable. However, this is now getting into more deeply economic effects, so I don’t want to talk about it here.

    The Neo Huroids in stage 4 have an annoying drop rate for passes

    Personally, I’ve never really been bothered by the drop rate in this stage, but I have scarcely found an MPQ party who did not complain about it. So, for their collective sake, this section is here.

    Stage 4 requires gathering at least 4 passes from the Neo Huroids in the map (which are, of course, buffed Neo Huroids with way more HP and defenses than ordinary ones). Each Neo Huroid has some fixed probability of dropping a pass, so you are forced to farm them until you get sufficiently lucky. If you get lucky, this is no problem. If not… well, it’s at least tedious enough that this is most players’ least favorite stage (yes, even more hated than stage 6).

    Besides simply buffing the drop rate, one possible way of ameliorating this issue is implementing something similar to DotA 2’s so-called “pseudo-random distribution” (not to be confused with the unrelated notion of pseudorandomness). This “simulates” a sequence of Bernoulli trials, but actually makes a trial’s “success” more likely in proportion to the length of the “failure streak” (unbroken sequence of failures, which may have length zero or more) preceding that particular trial. To compensate, trials with relatively short failure streaks preceding them have a lower probability of success than the nominal success rate. This is tantamount to reifying the gambler’s fallacy.

    Bugs

    The transition from stage 4 to stage 5 often crashes the game

    This is a bug that requires a workaround (a workaround that, I might add, often does not work) to mitigate the impact that it has on MPQ runs. The workaround is as follows:
    • All party members must know not to go through the portal from stage 4 to stage 5, even when stage 4 is cleared.
    • When stage 4 is cleared, the party must collectively decide on exactly one (1) player among them that will serve as a sort of “sacrifice”. If this player is the leader of the party, then they must pass the leadership (at least temporarily) to one of the other party members.
    • The sacrificial player enters the portal from stage 4 to stage 5, while everyone else remains in stage 4.
    • The sacrificial player clicks on the “Yulete” NPC (or, if they are not playing on a high enough resolution, they may have to walk forward just enough to get Yulete within their vision) and goes through the dialogue.
    • The sacrificial player then walks forward until the “ambush” is sprung, causing Yulete to disappear, an NPC chat (with Yulete) to be forced on the sacrificial player, and a horde of mobs to be spawned, all at once. This results in one of two outcomes:
      • The good outcome: The sacrificial player goes through the dialogue, and then informs their party members through party chat that the coast is clear (usually by saying “c” or “d”). The rest of the party members can now enter stage 5 and complete it as normal.
      • The bad outcome: The sacrificial player’s client instantly crashes. Their party members can potentially still complete the PQ, depending on the situation.
    It is not at all uncommon for at least one party member to crash as a result of this transition. I suspect (and this is just a hunch) that the crash has something to do with the forced NPC chat that occurs when the “ambush” is sprung. So it may(?) be possible to fix this bug by getting rid of the forced NPC chat entirely, and simply replacing it with a message that shows up in chat.

    The beakers in stage 3 sporadically fail to register Suspicious Liquids that are placed on them

    Sometimes, after throwing 7 or 8 Suspicious Liquids on top of one of the beakers in stage 3, the beaker will pick up a few of them and then mysteriously stop (thus simply leaking liquid and undoing the work that was done to fill it). There is, apparently, no trigger for this occurring, so reproducing this bug may prove somewhat painful.

    When this happens, the standard procedure is to get all party members to work together to move all of the Suspicious Liquids away from the affected beaker, and then to re-place them back on (and add a few more to counteract the leaking that has occurred). This takes even longer than you might think, because it typically takes a while to definitively tell whether or not the beaker is actually bugged, and because beakers are one-of-a-kind items that a given player can only possess 0~1 of at any given time.

    Using the Teleport skill during stage 6 leads to incorrect behavior

    The Teleport skill (along with other mobility skills like Flash Jump, Recoil Shot, Haste, Thrust, &c.) has obvious utility during stage 6, where mobility is key to solving the puzzle efficiently. However, using Teleport and then testing (pressing the up-arrow key on) the portal on any of the platforms will result on the player getting sent to the bottom as if they picked the wrong platform, even if they picked the correct platform.

    This only seems to happen within some time after Teleport is used, so if you wait sufficiently long after the skill is used, it typically will not produce the bug. There is also no indication of what is going on, so it is very common for mages (at least, those unaware of the bug) to get “stuck” in this stage because it seems that all of the platforms on a given level are “wrong”.

    Parties that have one or more White Knights and one or more Fire/Poison Mages are prone to suffer from an instakill bug

    I’m not lying when I say that I have lost a not-insignificant quantity of EXP and Safety Charms due to this bug, before realizing what was going on. For some reason(!?), mobs in MPQ that are simultaneously affected by Threaten’s status effect, and by the poison effect of Poison Mist (and/or possibly the poison effect of Poison Breath; I’m not sure), deal incredibly large amounts of damage in a single hit, enough to kill even a White Knight… not to mention other, more squishy classes.

    The workaround here is typically to have any White Knights unbind Threaten from their keybindings, for the duration of MPQ.

    Angry Franken Lloyd sometimes instakills players(?)

    This one is a bit of a weird one, as I’m not entirely sure of the cause (unlike the Threaten + poison instakill bug). It seems that when Angy Franky uses his boxing-glove attack (in which, double-doors open up his torso and a bright red boxing glove is shot out towards the player(s)), this causes a “1/1” (reducing HP and MP to exactly 1 and 1, respectively) attack to occur at least some of the time(?). Mostly, this is not fatal (provided that you heal swiftly enough), as it is just a normal 1/1 attack. However, it seems(?) that either (or both) of the following are true:
    • Angy Franky’s 1/1 attack does not always grant the victim iframes (invincibility frames).
    • Angy Franky’s summoned minions (Reinforced Iron Mutae & Reinforced Mithril Mutae) can, perhaps under some race condition, hit players “through” their iframes.
    The result is that getting hit by Angy Franky’s 1/1 attack while intersecting (or nearly intersecting) the hitbox of one of his minions often proves fatal, with no chance of surviving by HP potions/Heal.

    Thankfully, this bug is quite rare (although I have died to it once, and have seen some 2 or so other players die to it).
     
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  2. yurain
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    yurain Capt. Latanica

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    Really good points you suggested. I don't even know where to start.
    Everything sounds like a pain to fix, with pityful reward to obsolete content.

    Maybe a simple solution is to just do a disclaimer note at lv71 and tell player to not do MPQ and do PPQ instead. Much better exp and you can even get a cool chair.
     
    • Disagree Disagree x 5
  3. Lin
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    Lin Nightshadow

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    What i remember was back in 2007-ish, R&J PQ was VERY popular and way more crowded compared to Pirate PQ, i can't remember how the EXP rewards were like, but I trained my Dragon Knight from 71 to 85 all from R&J.

    Here's a couple vids of how chaotic a R&J PQ on Legends can be MapleF8


     
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  4. Fraija1
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    Fraija1 Master Chronos

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    I really was wanting to do that PQ but with all of those downsides you mention its seems that this will be an "utopic" type of PQ or something like that with crushes with imposible monsters with KO boss...

    I mean Megatia is one of my favorites towns and if i need to do that pq to complete a quest i really was going forward to do it but now... this was too much to handle (and all the lecture in this post)
     
  5. SaviorSword
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    SaviorSword Stone Golem

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    Ah Poison Threat, we meet again! Poison Threat is a glitch that affects any Monster that can get the Poison status. Of course because the Monsters here in MPQ have much more HP than their normal counterparts, there is a much greater chance to trigger it.
     
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  6. Soblet
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    Soblet Skelegon

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    Really looking forward to doing my first MPQ runs once I get to that level, thanks for the great read and I hope these issues can be looked into.
     
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  7. JKNS
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    JKNS Mixed Golem

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    The beaker thing tends to happen if two players drop liquids at the same time, you can usually tell if you do the PQ enough times. This is why I generally liked to lure Homunculus to the beaker that's being worked on and to always try and have 8 liquids on hand (you need 7 to fill the beaker, but insurance in case things go wrong, such as this or people not dropping liquids fast enough).

    Are Rocks really that rare? I leveled 2 characters exclusively through PQs like you did, and I got 5/6 Rocks from PQ rewards instead of exchanging 10 marbles on either end (and I ended up getting a 4th Rock on both characters). Many of the people I PQ'd with also got a Rock or two from the PQ itself. That said, it's incredibly difficult to cram in 80 PQs unless you exclusively lock yourself in to MPQ from 71-85. If the price of Rocks were dropped from 10 Marbles to 5-7 of one side or 10 Marbles combined, that'd be cool, but party members tend to be pretty accommodating towards switching sides from experience. Or make it a Frank drop and have people roll for it. I also think letting the Rock add +1 to all stats is fair as well: pass 2 and you have a better Deputy Star that can be worked for.

    The Stage 5 D/C still exists, huh? We tried to figure out the root cause of it, from making sure that we debuffed everything entering the stage thinking that it was a skill that was causing the bug. Still never found out why. Same with what caused Frank to do 1/1s instead of a regular attack (though it always gave me iframes). I do recall 1/1s being significantly more common on Zenumist side (Romeo) than Alcadno side (Juliet). Though, if you're a DK with Fury (PA preferably), you can actually hug the right wall and attack Frank and be out of his range for 1/1 if you have the aggro on him (which protects you and your party), since he'll only do the 1/1 or boxing attack if you step into range.

    Does MPQ really take longer than OPQ? OPQ is quite lengthy and all the puzzles can make the PQ take 15-20 minutes, but most MPQs fit in that range as well.

    I actually would not mind seeing the level range extended. The main issue with MPQ is that it's horribly difficult for any low-level 7x class to be particularly useful (or in the case of some classes, you're pretty much dead-weight for the entirety of the level range). Unless you're fortunate enough to get Mist Mages on your squad (since they help the most with the tankiness of mobs and even the Weapon Cancels), you'll have a rough time either doing damage or surviving. Angry Frank (which is what basically every team goes for) also does a lot of damage to unwashed range chars (around 1.6-1.8k iirc, which is a nightmare amount of damage for Archers and Hermits without Hyper Body). Give classes some time to get better survivability and more points into skills that help clear these stages fast. There are ways around this: Frank will always follow the first player to hit him and aggro to them, so you can protect ranged characters by having the player who hits Frank first hug a wall and continue to attack, while the others can attack from an opposite side and only have to worry about the Mutaes he summons. Just make sure not to touch him when he opens his body: that will warp you out of the boss room and reset the aggro to neutral, meaning he'll be a headache to your party members again.

    The other part of MPQ being incredibly difficult to run is, unless you have a group that's willing to consistently run with you, you're directly competing with leech, and good leech on top of that for the entirety. That makes it difficult to find people willing to run. 3 MPQs will probably level a character from 71-72 (or come very close), but even late WR leech from 71-75 will get you one level every 45-50 minutes (and WS, we're talking every 30 minutes from 75, and even when it slows down, you'll level considerably quicker leeching there than doing MPQ at that level). Even if you were to do 15 minute PQs the entire time (which is quite difficult to do with even 3 8x players carrying the Level 71 and also requires drop luck with liquids and card keys in Stages 3 and 4), you're either just as fast or slower than WR leech at the same level. And doing the same thing for 15 levels gets monotonous to a degree: you're locking yourself out of other content to do a PQ that gives less EXP than leech spots at the same level and a worse pendant than the Dep Star (save for HP/MP if you pass 2 or 3 Rocks).

    I think the main things are:

    Extend Level Range past 85 (to where, I'm not sure: I'm the type of person that would like to see no level limits on PQs, or something similar to BPQ where all members have to be within X levels of each other, and the mobs/bosses in the PQs be adjusted for that, but we keep the same minimum level entry for each PQ). Maybe like 71-90 or even like 75-100. Just enough to where players don't feel like they have to dedicate the entirety of their 71-85 Mapling experience to get the pendant, but also give them some time to add to their 3rd job skills and make PQs easier.

    Make Rock of Wisdom cost fewer of one marble type or 10 combined Marbles, as well as give +1 all stats on successes. I don't think the PQ will draw enough people in any level range unless Horus' Eye becomes a reward worth getting (which means it has to have a reasonable shot at being at least as good as a Deputy Star, even if it requires work instead of just buying or asking for help with the ETCs). Otherwise, the ease of leech and difficulty of finding groups to run with make it less tenable an option.

    I have no comment on changing the Mage/Jump rooms: I personally enjoyed the way that it's structured. Same with the two-sided PQ: it wasn't a major hassle to change sides when someone wanted/needed marbles of a specific side.
     
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  8. OP
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    deer Pac Pinky

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    PPQ can be better EXP, but not with a given party, I imagine. Both PPQ and MPQ scale very well with the DPS output (but single- and multi-target) of the party, so if you are getting bad EXP from MPQ, then you are going to get even worse EXP from PPQ. PPQ really is aimed at the OPQ level range w.r.t. EXP rewards (since it starts at level 55, unlike MPQ, which starts at 71), which causes this effect. In any case, besides MPQ giving better EXP, it's more fun imo. :p

    Don't get me wrong, MPQ is definitely more difficult than the PQs that come before it, but if you're really willing to give it a fair shake, it is good EXP and fun for those who like KPQ/LPQ/OPQ-style PQs!

    Ah! Good to know, I wasn't aware of this glitch until I died to it a few times (and lost a party member or two) in MPQ, haha.

    Right, I've done the 8-liquid thing in almost all of my MPQ runs, but it doesn't really fix the issue... If the bug happens, dropping 8 (or 9, or...) actually can make it worse because it then takes more time to take them off and re-place them, making it more likely that you leaked additional liquids.

    In my experience, yes. I did get lucky on one character that I leveled from 71 to 86 exclusively in MPQ, and I got 3 Rocks of Wisdom as end-rewards and didn't have to turn in any marbles for them. But I haven't seen anyone who had a similar experience, and on my other character that I leveled 71 -> 86 exclusively through MPQ, I got zero. I also know someone else (who was very funded and able to do MPQs quite quickly) who had to kill themselves literally dozens of times (unfortunately a Chief Bandit, so high LUK D: ) to finish their pendant.

    Right, that's my main way that I haven't died in the boss fight since the first time I got insta-killed. I haven't been meleeing Angy Franky (I did MPQ with my STR priest, but mostly used Heal during the boss fight and/or lured the Neo Huroids), so I just keep my distance and make sure I don't get 1/1'd (and I jump to dodge his ranged attack).

    Absolutely. If you have a good or excellent MPQ party who knows what they are doing (and gets sufficiently lucky, of course), you can do an MPQ that takes less time than your average OPQ. However, on average, MPQ runs take at least an extra 5 minutes (that's like, an extra +20%) than OPQ runs... and I have done plenty of MPQs with parties that took as long as 35~50 minutes (yes, MPQ only allows you to take up to 45 minutes, so anything longer than that was a failure entirely!) that could have easily done OPQ runs in 25 minutes tops! MPQ is ultimately much more luck-based than OPQ (barring the roughly 1/32 probability of skipping the 5-lever stage in OPQ), and more importantly, MPQ scales much more heavily with DPS.

    Your point about mages not being as useful in the boss fight is fair, but there's three things that make it not so bad:
    • Most of the time in the PQ is spent where mages are useful, i.e. killing mobs of mobs.
    • Mages still really help in the boss fight, due to being able to take care of the Neo Huroids, the Reinforced Iron Mutae, and also helping a bit with DPSing the boss.
    • The key to MPQ really is having a diverse party, and that's OK. Less well-equipped parties should still be able to complete, even if more slowly.
    I leveled my unwashed woodman (STR archer) from 71 -> 86 through MPQ entirely, and the fight with Angy Franky can definitely be nervewracking and HP-pot-consuming, but even at level 71 I had some 2.1~2.2k HP, which was at least enough to survive, if I was quick enough.

    Your points about Angy Franky's aggro don't seem to apply anymore. The boss fight is generally more difficult since the summer event patch, which made mob aggro really bizarre. This means that "luring" the Neo Huroids is now much more difficult or even impossible in some cases (so usually classes that can stun/freeze are best for doing the protection stuff), and also means that Angy Franky's aggro tends to flip-flop, even causing him to slide around the map and teleport around due to lag!

    Right, I don't expect any PQs to compete with leech, so I really don't disagree here other than to say that I personally dislike leeching as a mechanic anyways, so I never leech or give leech under any circumstances. And the perfect pendant is, as I outlined in my original post, not just superior to the Silver Deputy Star in HP/MP, but also in MDEF, WDEF, and AVOID!

    I agree that extending the level range is important, although I would like to keep the minimum level at 71.

    I also agree that making Rocks of Wisdom cheaper is important, and having it give better stats on success would be pretty cool imo, but I'm biased in thinking that it should not have a success rate lower than 100%. Imo, it's better to treat Rocks of Wisdom as upgrades, similar to upgrading your earrings in EPQ so that they give +2 to all stats instead of +1. But this is my bias, because I personally think that punishing players for doing nothing wrong (I use the Rock of Wisdom, it fails, so I guess I'm being punished for being bad at the game...?) is poor game design.

    I might note that one way of making the Horus' Eye stand out is to make Rock of Wisdom give better stats, but only defensive ones. So instead of +70 HP & +70 MP, you might do something like (this is a total spitball) +70 HP, +70 MP, +70 WDEF, +70 MDEF, & +6 AVOID, or whatever...

    I agree that the JQs are not a huge priority, but anything that makes getting MPQ parties smoother is welcome. I think you can make it easier without seriously changing the structure.

    The two-sided PQ is definitely an issue. Yes, it's "easy" to switch sides, since there are teleporters that take players between both sides of the main "Magatia" map, but that's kind of besides the point. The point is that it's difficult to congregate in one place (so we miss potential party members who happen to check out the side that we aren't on), it's difficult to figure out which side to do when >0 people need one side and >0 people need the other (thus making teamwork more difficult and tensions flare up), and it's needlessly difficult to get the rewards because of it... ultimately, I have to do 50 MPQs to get my Horus' Eye; why do half of them have to be on each side? It's the same PQ!
     
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    It's pretty simple to tell when the liquid thing could potentially occur, so you quickly reloot and redrop the liquids (preferably with one person so you don't run the risk of doing the same thing of dropping two liquids simultaneously).

    I've always found MPQ to be pretty crisp and quick. On the Way Up and Papa Pixie's obnoxious HP make OPQ take a pretty consistent 18-20 minutes (Garden chews up so much more time compared to Frank, with the Nependeath planting and ridiculous HP relative to player levels). Heck, even navigating the large map for individual spawns in Storage eats up a decent amount of time. MPQ balances out one or two somewhat lengthy stages with three extremely quick, brute-forceable stages in the Letter/Switch Stage 1, Dark Room Stage 2, and Mutae summon Stage 5. Only the extreme end of the unluckiest MPQs hover in the 25-30 minute range: 18-22 is extremely reasonable. Like on a percentage basis, sure, we're talking ~40% of the allotted time for MPQ as opposed to ~30% for OPQ, but in raw minutes they're basically equal.

    Did not mention Mages being not useful in the boss fight (though it's basically true for Priests, who might be the least useful class in the PQ in terms of generating positive progress): I mentioned that every early 3rd job class will fail to contribute much value, and Angry Frank's damage capacity is a bigger issue to deal with for most classes (on the whole, F/Ps are great and I/Ls are quite good: Priests are pretty F-tier though because good god early Shining Ray is pitiful and relegates you to HS muling, Healing, and luring mobs to and from beakers, all of which are helpful to party members who will actually drive the PQ forward). It's only until you start getting more points in certain skills that a class becomes more viable at MPQ: early on, your damage sucks and touching Frank either puts you on the brink of death or kills you instantly. Being squishy sucks, being low-level sucks, and being both squishy and low-level doubly sucks (or worse).

    Part of the reason I like the Mage JQ is that it's balanced among the Mages: Priests can heal the rapid HP drain while being basically deadweight the entire rest of the way, while Mages themselves add more to the PQ but have to take slightly more cautions with the room (though auto-pot is your friend, however fickle it may be). Glad to hear they made Frank not an absolute bore of a boss anymore, seems actually engaging.

    As someone who entered MPQ levels with a Dep Star in hand already both times, Horus' Eye was always just something to get because it was a PQ reward with a limited window to obtain. A perfect pendant still (which I was fortunate enough to get both times) would lose out on the most important stats comparatively, so it was more something to get in the moment because I wouldn't be able to go back for it later on. Even if it added more Defenses, Speed/Jump, etc: I don't think any of those stats would have made the pendant any less of a diversionary adventure for me unless I could get a similar 5/5/5/5 equip or potentially 6/6/6/6. If we're going to make the Rock 100%, then I think the price of Rocks should stay the same (especially if we buff the stats given), but I think making Rocks (and even the pendant itself) slightly easier to obtain is fair if the success rate stays sub-100%, whether that's lowering/unifying prices or making it a Frank drop.

    If people won't cooperate for the general progression of the party, then that's their decision. I always assumed that 25/25 wouldn't be enough and helping other people get to their desired marble counts was an easy concession to make, but I guess that isn't the case for everyone. Some people just MPQ for cards (which are also stingy) and don't care about sides either.

    Bringing more people to MPQ, I think, requires expanding the window and improving the reward first: QoL stuff isn't the main issue on hand for MPQ's lack of popularity. Make it more viable and worthwhile first, then tackle QoL if it's still dead later on.
     
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    If you say so, I'll take your word for it. I've never been able to tell, and in any case, I play with a high enough ping time that it's effectively impossible for me to tell when two liquids are dropped """simultaneously""", and the same could be said for many who I've MPQed with. I don't really see how it being "pretty simple to tell when the liquid thing could potentially occur" makes the bug go away...? It's still there, so it would be somewhat nicer if it was fixed, than if it wasn't. That's my only point I'm trying to make.

    This doesn't at all reflect my experience doing roughly 240 OPQs and roughly 150 MPQs in recent memory, but I'll take your word for it.

    Right, I misread that section.

    You say "I think making Rocks (and even the pendant itself) slightly easier to obtain is fair if the success rate stays sub-100%", but keeping the success rate at, say, 60% doesn't actually do what you think it does. Yes, it technically makes the expected utility of each rock lower, but the reality is that getting a perfect pendant is still possible even if the success rate per-rock is <100%. So some (of those who get 3 rocks) will get perfect pendants, some will get 1 failure, some will get 2 failures, and some will get all 3 failures. Why? They all did the same amount of work, all made the same decisions, &c., and yet some are punished, others are not, and the power creep is the same, because the perfect pendants still exist among those who were 21.6% lucky enough. Making the success rate 100% increases the expected power per-pendant, but does not significantly change balance, since 21.6% is large enough to be significant. If you are worried about the pendant being too powerful, you should not nerf/not-buff it by randomly punishing players and leaving it effectively the same power level for the rest of them, imo.
     
  11. JKNS
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    The way Horus' Eye is currently structured, I think it's pretty silly to go into MPQ for the reward: the EXP is nice and it can add a set to your Monster Book without paying 25 or 50m for it later. But the truth is that the Deputy Star provides better meaningful stats and is easier to obtain, so it relegates the Horus' Eye to an extremely low-priority achievement and not much more than that (and I already believe neither the EXP nor the Franken Roid card set is worth it either, so that speaks to what I think of Horus' Eye). If we're not going to make it have the potential for stats to equal or surpass the Dep Star in STR/DEX/INT/LUK, then I don't particularly care about the success rate of the Rocks since all those boosts are, in my opinion, extremely negligible on an early to midgame pendant. So either make Rocks more available and keep it locked at a 3/3/3/3 stat equip, or bump the strength of Rocks up while keeping the currencies the same. If the 60% Rocks fail, you should still be using a Dep Star over a +3 Horus' Eye anyway as it currently is, so I see it as choosing a worse and harder to obtain equip instead of a punishment.
     
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    I certainly didn't mean to suggest that the only way to buff Rocks of Wisdom is to make them give extra defensive stats; I merely spitballed one of many, many ways in which successes could possibly be buffed. I also didn't mean to suggest that the Rock of Wisdom's effect on success has to be buffed, either! I'd personally love to see it buffed, but ultimately I think it's much more important that the success rate be 100%.

    We can invent as many ways as we want to say "STR, DEX, INT, LUK, WATK, and MATK are the only stats in the game that actually matter", but ultimately it's always going to be difficult or impossible to argue against. I personally have a character that is heavily like that; if I'm playing my magelet, I really could not care about losing out on any defensive stat, as long as I get more INT and/or MATK! But defensive stats do exist as well, and I typically care about them, myself. I'm not sure if anyone else plays any builds that might care about them as well, but my suggestion that it's "possible" to buff the Rock of Wisdom by making it give more HP/MP/WDEF/MDEF/AVOID is just a reflection of my own experience valuing these stats, even if I'm completely alone in that experience!

    Plus, there is very importantly nothing stopping you from wearing one pendant when you do one thing, and wearing another pendant when you do another thing :)
     
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    I've never been the biggest proponent of small Defense boosts as being meaningful, especially later on. 60 extra Defense is -30 damage, which does a whole lot reducing 1150 damage to 1120. Even -90 damage taking that damage down to 1060 isn't something I would personally consider impactful enough for me to care about upping success rates. Accuracy/Avoid are useful (especially for Warriors who lack a second passive source of Accuracy beyond Weapon Mastery), Speed/Jump to some degree but less so (with Mounts and some classes having mobility skills), and larger spikes in HP/MP would help, but MoN already gives all of these stats on top of an average of 5/5/5/5 (and MoN is currently the same price to buy reloot service as Dep Stars, so the only real barrier is the Level 110 requirement). So if this is just going to be a discount MoN, it's just easier to skip the Horus' Eye entirely.

    I think we're on the same page in that we want more exposure for MPQ, but I don't think that'll necessarily happen without base stat buffs to the Horus' Eye. I don't think the other stats are zero-impact, but I think they're very clearly less impactful than assisting with washing and giving a jump in secondary stats for wearing certain equips. I don't even know if buffing Rocks to give STR/DEX/INT/LUK would make the pendant more desirable in that sense, considering the effort needed to get it (I personally don't think it'd make that much of a difference, but it would potentially draw people looking for perfect washing equips to do the PQ. Either that or it'd start the meta of CSing Dep Stars which sounds like a nightmare and maybe this is a terrible idea after all). I think there is a balance where a pendant that has viability and distinction from the equip before and after is possible, but until that scenario comes up, Rock successes will always just be bonuses on a bonus equip to me, and that's why I'm not too bothered if success rates stay 60%.

    MPQ is my second favorite PQ and a load of fun, but after doing it to completion twice (and honestly, even after the first time), it was pretty evident that the output didn't match the input. This isn't exclusive to MPQ either (OPQ being dead is criminal considering it's far and away my favorite piece of Maple content), and it's a shame that a very enjoyable part of Maple is largely ignored.
     
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    I definitely get what you mean here, as I've felt the same way in certain situations with the Horus' Eye. I am, however, nevertheless committed to the Rock of Wisdom's success rate being 100%, even if it is otherwise not buffed. It just strikes me as really poor game design to make the upgrades completely random in whether they ever occur or not (again, you might not care --- and that's fine by me --- but it is punishing players for absolutely no reason), and I much prefer something like EPQ or PPQ where upgrades are actually based on what the player does.
     
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    To the OP, very nice post, I enjoyed reading all the expertise that could only have been accumulated from countless runs. MPQ is by far my favorite PQ on the server (excl. CWK, which is less fun imo but the rewards are too enticing), and I agree it would be nice if MPQ got more love overall.

    The biggest draw of PQ’s to me is that it’s a nice alternative to the monotony of grinding since you get a bit more variation in the things you’re doing and a bit more social intersection while you’re doing them. Honestly, I couldn’t have cared less about the pendant. But I think this comes down to personal play style, and I would say the biggest contributing factor, by far, to my enjoyment of MPQ was that I was in no hurry to level.

    A previous poster said this already, and it’s that this PQ can’t realistically compete with leech...or maybe even grind..., and I think that’s true no matter how you tweak the stages to make it go faster. I feel like there’s an implicit sorting that goes on where the people who do come back to PQ at this point, either for quest or cards or just to play with other people, while there are tons of other options to level more efficiently, these are going to be players with more compatible play styles. After putting 2 chars through MPQ (almost exclusively from 71-85) myself, I’ve definitely seen cliques that form out of players that do continue to play together after they hit 86, and the sorting on preferences probably has a lot to do with that (about half the players I’ve met at MPQ kind of quit the game after leveling out, probably since leech/grind is just too unappealing). All this is to say that...yes, finding a party for this PQ was a struggle, but at the end of the day, I think I was ok with it since I had fun and also met other people who also thought it was fun.


    Some stray thoughts:

    Wow, thanks for explaining teleport bug since the first time I did that stage on my mage, I was convinced either none of my platforms were right or that the right combo changed every few iterations...

    It would be so great if the dc problem from the sneak stage was fixed somehow. It’s absolutely terrible to be the sacrifice and dc after going through the hassle of finding a party AND finding 4 passes from the neo huroids.

    Sorry, there was no real point to all this, just wanted to share my reactions to your very well-written post :D
     
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    theKatia Capt. Latanica

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    I wrote a whole post about MPQ before I saw this, whoops.

    I just wanted to add that another benefit to 100% Rock of Wisdoms is that it guarantees +210 HP. Having a free, guaranteed extra 110HP over Deputy Star is a really good incentive on a server where washing is necessary for some content. That provides a good reason on its own to run the PQ and even gives it some utility over HTP in some edge cases.

    You've hit all of my other frustrations with your post. Super well-written!

    ps. i miss you at mpq D:
     
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    By the time you’re at the point where that extra 110 HP makes a real difference, you should already have access to MoNs, which render both Horus’ Eye and Deputy Stars obsolete (5/5/5/5 averages with 300 HP/MP).
     
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    Feeed Mr. Anchor

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    Oh I didn't know this, thanks. Even more of a reason to buff Rock of Wisdom then lmao
     
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    Don't worry, my I/L magelet is level 72 now :p I'm ready to freeze some diaper robots.
     

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